THE TEMPORALNESS OF EVERYTHING IN THIS WORLD
Everything is transcient and temporal in this world. This is why the sages of Buddhism practiced non-attachment. "The cause of all misery is the human body"(Lao Tzu). None could be more apt and succinct. All things in this world are temporal and the moment we are living, we get attached to things, animals, persons, places. Others get attached to material things, wealth, titles status, in the end, at the time of death, all these empty titles are gone and all that is left is but a corpse. A cold corpse. The cause of all misery is the temporalness of all things in this world. A fool thinks the world is his place of pleasure he thinks he is the master, attempting to be God. Of course naysayers will shudder their heads in hypocrisy saying of course we are not attempting to be God, we are devotees of God, sure you worship or go to your congregations every week but in your daily life, you indulge in a hedonistic life. We try to get pleasure in this world, we try to control our lives, to attain success, this that, we are chasing after one thing to another. From birth to old age, in childhood to adolescent, the person chases after things, is always in anxiety, as a child for toys, in adolescent for social acceptance, education, love family, job, success, titles, position, children, material acquisition, then what? The end result of your life has been one whirlwind chase, chasing after this material fancy and that, an emptiness. We are always in anxiety chasing after what we want, how to get it, how to keep it. Because the nature of this world ensures that we can never keep anything we are attached to: be it in the form or a loved one, material success, titles, power, anything. We are always in constant anxiety chasing after these temporal "things" we think we need to acquire in order to be "happy". Our life is one aimless chase after another pursuing this thing and another. Things society tells you you must have, because everyone is doing so. But does it make you happy or does it in fact put so much anxiety and pressure on you? You are trying to chase and get something and you are always in constant anxiety that you won't be getting what you want and so you say Dear God pls I pray let me have this and that and I will say several prayers etc. etc.......The fact is we are trying to be enjoyers, masters of this world, we are trying to be pseudo Gods, but such is the design of this world that we will always be reminded that ours is a futile attempt to be 'master' of this world. The master serves his dog, the husband his wife and kids, the politician his people, we try to control but we end up being controlled. All these are just futile attempts to be enjoyer/master because the world is built in with automatic reminders that this is a temporal place: suffering: birth, diseases pain, natural calamaties, senseless disasters, death. Each of these experiences extremely painful and painful enough to tell us that this world is a place of suffering. Only a fool thinks he is enjoying when he is suffering. We always lose what we have after we get it, loss of loved ones.....this goes to show how fragile and temporal this world is....happiness everything is fleeting. You cannot stake ownership on anything, even your loved ones...due to the fact the everything in this world is "temporal"......a lifetime spent on chasing material things and in the end, you are drained and you have to leave them. You are constantly chasing and constantly losing. You may think you are secure now you have everything but there will come a time, when you will lose all these persons, things, assets, on which you have placed your security because this is the law of nature. Nothing lasts. Everything is so fast and temporary. Thus, we are abusing nature and other creatures in our attempt to stake and claim ownership on what is naturally ours. Instead of knowing that we are here as temporary guardians and caretakers of nature and peacefully and silently enjoying the little blessings of nature, we instead scramble and fight each other in a mad attempt to stake ownership of whatever part of the material world we can claim our own and take greedily all we can out of lust. Greed. We must come to know that all futile attempts borne out of greed will still end in an empty life and a drained shell of a corpse. And who suffers from our abuses are the next generation of our own blood.
Anyone who suffers the loss of a loved one, loss of a dream, loss of money, loss of success or anything will understand the temporalness and transcience of this world. Everything will come to pass, one must understand this first in order to prepare for the bitter ride of the realities of this world. Let us not fool or blind ourselves into believing that life is one big party for our hedonistic pursuits and pleasures and God is our servant who caters to our every needs. Life is in fact a rehabilitation center for all pleasure seeking rebellious souls who intend to be "God" thus master enjoyer of their universe. Though we may imagine life to be a big pleasure party, the illusion lasts partly a second and will soon be shattered by nature's law built-in realities to remind us this is not our natural home. Death, loss of a loved one, grief, sufferings, diseases, senseless deaths, accidents, all these are too potent and devastating that will leave anyone powerless and make him realize he is so puny and helpless and totally not in control in the universe he perceives as his playground. He will come to understand the temporalness and the futility of his illusions of pleasure and all the things he is chasing after.
REINCARNATION EXPLAINED: A Book Review
“REINCARNATION EXPLAINED”: BIRTH OF A TRUE SPIRUALITY
Our civilized society, so civilized yet so full of chaos, full of pretentiousness, so-called sophistication, yet in reality, we see barbarism, murders, injustices as normal daily fare. Religion appears to be a false elixir, a brand name proudly worn like branded clothes, cars, a narcissistic statement to glorify one's ego, that he belongs to the “right” religion. Yet when we contemplate on it, there is no right or wrong religion. Each religious sect believing theirs to be the right religion yet all these are but narcissistic ego trips. No wonder there is so much terrorism, wars, all waged in the name of ‘religion’. With all our religions and false piety, crimes are committed in the name of God, Israeli-Palestine bombings, so much bloodshed over a “so-called” piece of promised land. But man does not have any common sense, to realize how he himself is going against the way of his so-called religious values, for all these crimes committed in the name of so-called “religion” are self-serving ego trips. As a matter of fact, man is so clever he disguises his narcissistic desire for power through a false sense of piety in religion. Using it as a scapegoat, he is well justified in committing murder, all in the name of God. Through the centuries, man has grown technologically, but in reality we are mere spiritual cretins.
Jagad Guru’s book Reincarnation Explained is a wake-up call for those worn and weary jaded souls who have turned atheists in a futile attempt to find meaning in any religion. This book is truly a spiritual god-send showing us that true spirituality is one that emanates from the heart and soul, not to be identified with a particular sect of religion. When I was a child growing up in a Catholic society, one would hear horror stories about eternal damnation hell and brimfire stories, and tales of Adam and Even, how through the fault of our forefathers we are condemned temporarily to a life of suffering on earth. With this, literal interpretation and all those meaningless rituals, and yet when you contemplate on it all, everyone becomes a saint during weekly religious congregations, then free to go about in the callous compassionless ways back in daily existence. When one grows up to have enough sense of reasoning, one realizes how most religions are empty 'nothingness' , a false sense of narcissistic elixir, for true compassion is not practiced in daily life. We focus so much on rituals, this is part of our ‘image’ conscious society, everyone is just keen on keeping abreast with superficial things, who is popular, the trend, appearing politically and morally "correct" and right, etcetera. Religion is just another ‘pretense’ in our pretentious society . To prove how utterly sophisticated and civilized we are, ever ‘image-conscious’ as man is, he must appear so holy and pious to hide his inner beastly instincts. In truth we have not changed, it is still a dog eats dog world, survival of the fittest with the weak being laughingly thrown out as outcasts.
One reflects on this world, and one must have observed how from the lowest specie to the highest form, each creature sucks his life off the death of another creature. Insects feed on other smaller insects, lions on deers, and man, considering himself the highest in the food chain feels it his due right to needlessly kill lower species for his gastronomic pleasures. It is a survival of the fittest with the weak knowingly awaiting his death in the hand of a stronger specie that will annihilate his existence for his own survival. By plunging in the same spiral, man proves he is no better than beasts who need to kill another creature for its own wretched existence. But of course, pious religious heads will wash their hands in white linen saying to high heavens that all creatures serve a purpose on this earth and certain creatures are made for food consumption. Yet what have the laws of nature taught them? SARS, bird’s flu, mad cow’s disease and yet man, for all his so-called superior intelligence, does not have any common sense and insists on eating the plate of forbidden poison even when it has taken lives of his own specie. Pray tell, what kind of God, when we consider our God as the most compassionate one, would create some species merely for food consumption, when the mere fact, that the deaths these creatures need to go through before they become expensive menu entrees, the bloody deaths these creatures undergo, are no laughing matter. Is this something a compassionate God would condone? Create some creatures for food, knowing the bloody and extremely cruel manner they must go through to die. And pray tell me, what special deed is it we have done, that we should deserve to be born as ‘humans’? Nobody knows. Yet one can say that surely, that the compassion of God is not just limited to humans. God, the all compassionate one, his compassion extends to all creatures of this world. And by that, I wonder how these so-called 'holy people' would feel if they were the one born in the shoes of these animals with knives pointed at their throats, lined up at slaughterhouses with nobody to save them from the bloody gallows of death. And what fault is it of these creatures that they are “FOOD”, no fault at all except that they were born as pigs and cows. God’s compassion is limitless and encompassing, Jesus once said that even the tiniest of bird God watches over. Compassion is not selective most especially God’s and the pain of another creature is not negated merely because it was born a pig. This is what we have failed to see in our culture because we are merely blinded by man-made doctrines and norms, when man merely blindly follows what is dictated by those deemed to be in 'power' without questioning in his heart if it is right or wrong. It is what happened to the Jews in Auschwitz, because the ones responsible for the death of the Jews were awed by the power and authority of Hitler, never daring to question the rightness or wrongness of his deeds. Racial genocides such as that came to exist in the first place, because of man's rationale justifying slaughtering of animals such as pigs by saying they are 'just pigs'.
Reincarnation Explained a straight forward matter of fact book, that does not mince words when it comes to religion. Everyone must have toyed with the idea of reincarnation once in his life, but it remains just that a whimsical thought due to the fact that this belief is perceived to be prohibited in the Catholic faith. Yet as Jagad Guru says, when we allow an institution to dictate our spiritual life, it is no longer spirituality but religion in the guise of holy men who are playing politics and using religion to wield power over the fearful masses. And this is what has been done to us Asians by our Western colonizers. Was our “Bathala” an inferior God compare to the Christian God our Spanish colonizers deemed to be the one true god? And this they did by ramming it down our throats through much violence and bloodshed.....labelling us as indios... uncivilized barbarians? When in fact, our forefathers were living much peacefully in an idyllic paradise worshipping their God. Whichever God makes no difference and whether Bathala or Allah these are just names. Would our western colonizers perhaps know the fact that even before they could fathom what religion is, us Asians were long civilized before they could know what “God” is. India having the longest civilization in all of mankind and the rest following in respective orders, Asian and Middle-eastern Countries: China, Egypt, Mesopotamia. People from India were long before practicing a silent unassuming spirituality observing respect for all creatures before the Jews could start to comprehend what religion is and start saying to all and sundry that they are the ‘chosen people of God’. Simply put God does not choose a sect of people to spread his word and there is no such thing as a “chosen people of God”. Pray tell me, what about the Asians who lived and died before God all of a sudden appeared and chose to spread his word to the Jews. Are they to be damned and condemned because they were believing in a God of a different name? This is all too absurd. No wonder the Palestinians are so resentful. And who can blame them? With man’s tendency to embellish history with his narcissistic desire for posterity, the bible has about as much truth as does the Islamic scriptures of Mohammed as well as the ancient Vedic scriptures of India. Simply put, there is no such thing as a 100% factual historical basis, given man's propensity for narcissism and historical embellishments. And then you have people who claim they see things, witness so and so, does it merit our 100% belief just because they wrote this down on a supposedly historic piece of paper. As history has long proven, those ideas that came into rule or those who rule the country were not necessarily 'right' but they were 'powerful'. What people tend to believe in general, masses, are not necessarily what is right, but what is dictated by the powerful ruling the land, and thus forcefully enforced. Like in the wild, we , members of the mammal kingdom are no different, we kowtow to the alpha male/female. Thus what would have these supposedly ‘written records’ of these people from the past who insist that we should take their ‘written writings’ as pure “historical” facts and “Gospel Truth” from “God himself”, other than their writings itself. Anyone can write anything, but whichever powerful religious congregation(look over history and you will see that the religions that became powerful and survived and are forceful have been backed by the political ruling) can enforce a public to bow down to its belief, which is why history has shown how religion has been somehow mixed with politics. Isn’t it amusing to note, that unlike Westerners who took upon the often ‘brutal and violent’ task of Christianizing ‘asian barbarians’; on the other hand ancient people from India who hold the longest record for civilization in all of mankind, and possessing the richest cultures, and intricate written history and earliest spiritual records documented, these people never rammed their religion down the throats of any country. Instead they silently practiced their ancient Vedic scriptures with a quiet unassuming spirituality and true humility never claiming that theirs is the holiest word of “God” or that they were “God’s chosen people”. Also, like I said that any man can claim he sees an apparition or vision. Notice how why any Indian who has claimed he has seen an apparition is not taken seriously and perhaps may even be taken by the 'Western-cultured majority', for a fool; whereas you have some people from the West who claim they see apparitions, of course nobody is witness to this except themselves, but the whole world lauds applauds and venerates them as saints. Coincident or double standard? You be the judge. There has not been an Indian 'holy person' from the "ancient Vedic scriptures and Hindu religion" that is "acknowledged world-wide" and "the general global public" as a 'saint' but somehow people from the west have a way of glorifying people of their own race with titles and all Western 'saints' are globally acknowledged. Going back to what I was originally discussing...given man’s innate narcissism and desire for embellishments is there really any such thing as pure 100% unadulterated truth? There are people who insist they have seen such sightings of this and that. There have been and there will always be. In the end when you observe it all with a logical unbiased perspective and an open mind, it all boils down to "power play", in international politics, down to religion. Our laws have not changed much from the days of the jungle where the might was the right. We can see this in from the days of Asians were brutally colonized up to the present Western 'obssession/colonial mentality" , people are in awe and afraid of other countries who are deemed "richest' monetarily and perceived to be the most ‘powerful’ in terms of political warfare. If in fact, ours is a 'peaceful civilized' society on which hierarcy in political, status, and power is based on such noble causes and pious religious holy and Godly reasons, simply ask why are countries running about acquiring to build and enrich their "nuclear weapons"? Is the political/monetary power of a country based on the amount of nuclear weaponry it has amassed? So, we are so "civilized" that unlike our mammal relatives who resort to bullying powerplay tactics, pray ask, is our "hypocritical" civilization not similarly based on "powerplay or bullying tactics/aggression" of animals/primates in the wild or the "survival of the fittest/strongest" theory? Why were the Jews then unjustly and barbarically butchered and persecuted in the previous war by a Nazi regime which was deemed and considered 'aggressively powerful'? Why does it seem to appear that Israelis seem to have the upper hand in the Israeli-Palestine faction? Why? Is it because America is backing them? And why is Catholicism the most predominant religion? Is it because it is the truest of all religion or simply because it is a western propagated religion with the west having the upper hand in terms of politics and monetary power in general globally? So if it is the true and only correct religion, then is it correct to say other religions are therefore somehow just erroneous or just plain wrong? Men are just like unthinking masses of sheep that blindly follow what is might and popular. Sure people will shake their heads and say that their religion alone is the true compassionate religion of “God”. Sure and so is Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism ,etcetera, etcetera. It does not make much of a difference what your religion is. The point is spirituality comes from compassion that is practiced in daily life, bhakti-yoga as Jagad Guru says in the book and from non-violence to all creatures. Men, they may deny this to high heavens, but it is a reality that many become bitter because of the inequality of life, why are some born richer, more beautiful, blessed, they get jealous and pull down those they deem better than them. Yet if only they would understand the science of reincarnation: that we reap what we sow. What we are enjoying now are fruits of what we have sown. The body is temporary, every 7 years, we change from a child’s body to an adolescent’s to an old man’s. The body is not us, we are merely souls trapped in bodies, a dog’s body, a beast’s body, an old man’s body, depending on our subtle consciousness, this determines the body we would take on in our next life. Christianity tries but fails to explain this why there is so much inequality when God is deemed to be the most fair and just one. They cannot explain why is there suffering and pain in this world why bad things happen to good people and why some are born rich and healthy, others poor and in so much pain. They simply say it is a test from God, no wonder many just become disillusioned and turn atheists. The fact is, suffering is natural for this world just as it is natural for a fish to be suffering out of water. Simply put because this is not our home, this is just a transient place. This is rather an educational place for rebellious souls in their futile attempt to be God, lord and dominator of the world. It is not that our forefathers sinned and we are to pay the price of their sins. Forget the fairy tale myth of Adam and Eve, even our own faulty human courts never condemn the son of a criminal, how much more a most fair and just God. It is that originally we became envious of God, wanting to be lords ourselves and God knowing the innermost desires of our hearts, makes it possible for us not to serve him. Thus this world is in fact a rehabilitation center for all the rebellious souls who refuse to serve God, who want to be the Master Enjoyer themselves. Service and Love is from freewill, God does not force himself upon us or anyone and giving us free rights, he enables us to freely attempt to be God in this material world. Providing it with all amenities, beauties of nature and wonderful things, man then begins to think this is his real home. He struggles hard to be Lord but in the end realizes it is a futile attempt. From the time of birth, adolescent, to old age, he is continually chasing after one thing over another that he believes will make him happy, toys, education, wife/husband, lover, money, fame, power. He is always in anxiety, chasing after one thing or another which he believe he must have in order to ‘ENJOY’, to be the master enjoyer of this world. It is a futile attempt and endless chase that leaves him empty and drained and in the process of attempting to be the master and lord, he ends up serving. The politician ends up serving the people, the husband serving his wife, and children, the owner serving his pet dog. In order to get what he wants, the master ends up being the servant in this world. In the end, man if he has enough sense of wisdom, will end up realizing that his place is that of a servant and in this world, he is serving the inferior energy of God, due to his own choice. In order to be free from this cycle of rebirth, man must offer his life in service to God, bhakti-yoga in every thing he does practicing compassion and be free from any karmic debts or material desires. If man merely devotes his life to animalistic pursuits, then he will be provided an animal body in his next life. Man proposes, God disposes. If man is content merely using his basic faculties of survival, sleeping, eating, having sex, without developing his spirituality and practicing it in a real sense in his daily life, then God will provide him with a body that affords him his desires, and also depending on his karmic debts. Human life is the take-off point, where man has the power to free himself from the cycle of rebirth therefore it must be used wisely. No one is forever condemned to hell or eternal damnation as some fanatics would have us believe. When we refer to hell, we refer to a place of extreme suffering or pain, we can therefore say that plants and animals are in hellish condition because there awareness of God is so dim and for God’s children whose purpose is rasa lila exchanging love with God, this is a most hellish condition to be so far from God: to be unaware of him is an entirely suffering condition. Automatically, they will elevate until they reach the human form. It is not that only humans have souls but that souls have certain bodies. This is the fault of most religions that fail to acknowledge humility and propagate human superiority which is mainly the root of racism and ignorance. Precious human life is the point where we have responsibility and rationale therefore one must use wisely the human form of life. Even in the Catholic faith, one of the forefathers Origen, had written scriptures on reincarnation which were not taught to the masses, believing they were too ignorant to understand the value of the human form of life and were just content to live animalistically believing it would be fun to come back and take rebirth not realizing that this world is a place of suffering. When one says that other creatures are made for food consumption or etcetera, this does not jibe with the notion of a fair and just God. Why would God create certain souls who are eternally doomed to be trapped in an animal body, who are doomed to be in an eternally suffering condition, whose sole purpose in life is to eternally suffer? (And pray tell what special merit is it of ours that we were born as humans?) When precisely God is the most just one and his very joy is in "rasa lila", exchanging love with his children. Therefore God would never deliberately put some beings in an eternally suffering and doomed condition without having a chance to know him. All creatures are created to engage in loving exchange with God. Whether one is in an animal body or human body, a rich family, an ill body, it is not because of God’s fault, it is a result of one’s desires and karma which mold’s one’s subtle consciousness that shapes the body will take on in our next life.
Ignorance, prejudice, bias and mainly hypocrisy abound in this world merely because of our egos. We cannot pretend anymore that we live in a civilized society, because this is merely a false facade, a pretentiousness we cling on to serve our image-conscious egos. We live in a high-tech world but that is all that is superior in us: our gadgets, material things and false airs and egos. In reality, we are fearful cretins afraid of anything that is different from us. Our pride is our worst sin, first we feel we are superior species and feel it our just right to take away a creature of another specie’s right for life, be they lower form of animals, it does not matter, every creature is God’s creature with equal right to life. This is where racism starts, the fear of anything different, and the feeling of a sense of personal superiority and special right. The world is one that hardens us. Man starts out an innocent pure baby soul soft and compassionate but the world hardens us and in the end we are but a callous old embittered unfeeling shell with all the wealth and power in the world but devoid of any compassion. Where nothing matters but our own survival never mind who we step on or suck out the life, be it money-wise or through other forms, in the process. We become mere mercenaries. Observe the country lad who goes to the big city so young and full of innocence and hope and he learns the ways of society and ends up a bitter jaded man with no cares for anything except wealth, survival and power and the mere thought of his own existence. Nothing no longer hurts us, we are callous to even the tiniest pain of another creature be it a mere a pig or a cow or then later, a person of different race, religion or deemed to be a lowly working class person. In a society, although it hypocritically claims to be religious and fair, but in reality, measures a man’s worth based on wealth, looks and status, it is a sick neurotic society that destroys a man’s soul while enriching him with empty material things which mean nothing and which in fact are all our essential birthright. It is a false sense of priorities. Jagad Guru’s Reincarnation Explained is a welcome jolt for everyone who is disillusioned in this materialistic world and yearns for a true spiritual growth and a release from this mundane empty existence.